tv Washington Journal CSPAN November 26, 2011 7:00am-10:00am EST
later, a look at a wall street journal op-ed on whether the u.s. education system is to blame for the lack of skilled workers for companies to hire. "washington journal" is next. ♪ host: the current chairman of the hispanic caucus is not running for reelection in 2012. vice-president by an's role in 2012 will be a focus on battleground states of ohio, florida, pennsylvania, and nasa launched a new probe mars that cost $2.5 billion. they have a new rover called the curiosity.
"the wall street journal"look said a possible third candidate for the president. we ask you to make the case for or against a third-party candidate for the 2012 election, why or why not? you can tell us such a one of three lines this morning. the numbers are on your screen. you can e-mail us atjournal @cspan.org. " the wall street journal" where we got the idea for our question this morning.
the newspaper article shows theodore roosevelt and others running under independent parties. we go first off to florida, brett on our independent line, go ahead caller: i would like to see somebody who knows what they are doing. we are $15 trillion in debt. they're shunned -- there should be somebody knows what they are doing. i am in florida and i work seven days per worker and i know how to succeed. the people run this country don't. host: tell me specifically as far as a third-party candidate,
would you support or oppose such a person in 2012? caller: yes, and the body. obama told people what he would do. he told joe the farmer. these other characters don't know what they are doing either. they just tax and waste. that is all the federal government wants to do. host: if a person were to enter the race, give me specifics about what this person should have as far as qualifications or characteristics. caller: all federal employees, politicians, everybody's salary gets cut in half immediately. host: hunts still, alabama, democrats aligned. caller: a third-party candidate
would be intriguing but the democrats and republicans don't agree a lot these days. you can bet they would conspire to make sure this candidate would not get on the ballot. .of the 50 statess yes, it would be an intriguing idea. host: intrigue's you most about the idea? caller: a candidate like ross perot would stay away from the social issues. the vice president during the debate, ross perot's vice- presidential candidate said that women can do whatever she wants with her own body. host: that caller mentions the average to get candidates on the
ballots and an effort is already under way. this was written yesterday. this is about the group of americans electra -- why or why not for a third-party candidate is what we are asking you this morning. texas, scott, republican line, good morning. caller: it is the only way that president obama is reelected. the people promoting this idea know that. they are liberal by slant and they will promote this.
they will try to promote their party candidate. there is no way he is reelected and let's get that third party. >host: what is the likelihood of a third party next year? caller: with the egos of politicians, i am sorry that they have big ones, you just never know. i hope for the good of the country, we live it down to obama and whoever the republican will host: the paper talked about dissatisfaction among the candidates especially on the republican side. what do you think about the field running? caller: and not that dissatisfied. anybody on that stage in the republican debate is 10 times more qualified than the president -- then the present occupant of the white house. he was never even remotely qualified. with the exception of maybe two on the stage, i would vote for any of them. right now, i am behind newt.
michael ferris did not get in the race and that was haley barbour and john bolton ver. newt has some blemishes in his past but i am willing to look over those because he is an intelligent man and would be a very good president. host: this is from twitter -- market heights, ill., independent line, good morning. caller: thank you for cspan. without the internet you're the only way people get a voice. why not? we need a third party and the republicans and democrats just don't know -- they are about the same and we need to put the people back in charge from the city government to cart -- county government to the school board.
i agree with the last caller that a third-party would probably ensure that obama gets reelected. we cannot have that happen again. host: you would not see someone enter as a third-party candidate next year? caller: i would people would learn their constitution and learn american history and get out and vote. we have 20% of the vote or less voting? no wonder this country alexa these idiots. host: would you think that third party candidate should be? caller: really -- i don't have any idea. we need to get people out there who will answer questions, tell the truth no matter if the media will bash them or what people think. we need people who are willing to tell the truth and stand up for morals and values. host: george wallace was the
focus of our "the contenders" series. we look at those who have run presidential campaigns and failed but changed the way politics are done today. this is from 1968. george wallace talks about the fact that the needs of the parties at the time were addressing the needs of the people. >> i have repeatedly stated that one of the existing political parties must offer the people of this country a real choice in 1968 or that i would lead a political effort which would offer this choice. i have travelled to route our country in the last year, literally from concord, new hampshire to los angeles, california and miami, florida and the american people are hungry for a change in the
direction of our national government. they are concerned and disturbed about the trends being followed by our national leadership. there has been no response from either of the parties which would show the american people that they are heeding the growing disillusionment with what amounts to a one-party system in the united states. no prospective candidate of the two existing parties nor anyone in party leadership positions have come forward with any indication that there be any difference in their platforms. no one has suggested that the wishes of the american people would be heard. host: as george wallace -- that is george wallace's. . we are asking about a third party candidate, why or why not in 2012? caller: thank you for cspan. i've voted for obama last time and i will probably do it again but he was a disappointment
because he was not the radical he was supposed to be. we need a eugene debs or a bull moose party again. we need somebody to really shake this -- shake this country up very i seriously doubt it can happen. we definitely have the best government that money can buy. host: what elements to you think a person has to have to shake it up? caller: the ability to clean house, the ability to get congress to do the right thing. this government is so divided now that they have drawn a line in the sand and are incapable of functioning. it will be to our demise that they cannot get anything done. host: illinois, republican line, hello. caller: i think this is an interesting conversation. i am a conservative and i
support the tea party. i happen to be an african- american but i will say that i disagree with the conventional wisdom that ron paul running as an independent would help obama. it would destroy obama. i think they know that. they might want a third party candidate but they don't want ron paul. he is very attractive. the people 30 and under are heavily behind ron paul. even the people in the occupiy movement are ron paul supporters. if ron paul is an independent candidate, obama will get creamed. it is a similar situation -- the conventional wisdom was that charlie crist could run as an independent and you see what happens there.
he did not split the republican votes. he split the democrat vote. marco rubio ran off with it and that he said he will not do it. but if he does, ron paul will either be president or the republican candidate will be president. on paul will take a lot of president obama's support. he will not hurt republicans. he will our president obama. host: texas rep, charlie, solace, will not seek reelection on friday, he announced.
law or on in the peace he also writes -- gonzales has raised a decent sized some of that does not candidate the impending retirement. greensboro, north carolina. joseph on the independent line. caller: process is for taking my call. i believe we have come to a time in our history where we have two basic problems. the problem is that the two parties -- anyone who is elected, whether democrat or broken, once they get into office -- democrat or
republican, what they get into office they are ultimately be hold until there -- to their party. we saw that quite clearly with obama. despite his best intentions, he felt himself the holden and even trapped by his own party. of course, he was opposed by the republican party. i believe we need a third party regardless of what it is. i think that this particular party should be defined by an individual who is not beholden to the left or the right. first of all, individuals who are elected find themselves trapped in a corporation of their party. the second thing that concerns me even more is that the american public is so used to this and also locked in by this
that they cannot even consider the concept of a person who would deal directly with the people. real quick, pedro, even though i did not agree with anything that ronald reagan did, he did do think that was remarkable. i did not necessarily support reagan, but he went directly to the people. he had their approval. the country is run by the middle of this country. not the left, not the right. otherwise we would at the same party in office. they should not be so deeply affiliated that he or she as a trap. host: we have another call from greensboro, north carolina. this is robert on our republican line. hello. caller: when i was 21-year-old i voted for obama. this time around i am definitely voting for ron paul. none of the other republicans
will get my vote if they are nominated. that would be a real shame. maybe a war hawk like mixing rich, i could never support them. that is pretty much it. host: what about this idea of a third party entering the race next year? caller: they would probably still support from one of the major candidates. i know a lot of the republicans that have registered lately -- we switched parties pour that. host: the white house has sent out a letter in support of what you've probably seen this week. the report -- here is a little bit of what the white house has to say. >> my administration is committed to helping out small-
business drive toward recovery. i have assigned 18 tax cuts for small businesses. jacksonville, florida. this is the independent line. caller: i would also like to say thank you for c-span. when i originally called in, i have not heard some of the callers. in 2008, i worked and volunteered for the obama campaign in florida. it is the most passionate i have never been about politics. i am 28-years old right now. i feel that nothing can really get done while he is in office. the republicans hate him so much. he is so divisive.
the deadlock on everything. they are posturing on every issue, just like they were raising the debt ceiling like they had done for every private before. i would really enjoy seeing here -- and i do not like any republican on stage except for ron paul. i would like to see him drop out as a republican and come in as a third-party candidate. what is sad about the situation is that because even though he adheres to the original values of the republican party, the base will never get behind him because of his views the consider isolationist on foreign-policy. i am a registered independent, but i move a very are democratically. host: two as areas that have been brought up this morning -- a third party would split the vote so much that all the the
obama wins by default. caller: i could see that happen. even though i would vote for a third-party candidate company -- the only idiots that really sound like it's to me were a couple of your freaking callers. if president obama got reelected, i think more could get done during his second term because he would not have to worry about getting reelected. they are playing with kid gloves, because they are worried about this in people off and not be able to get reelected. pissing people off and not being able to get reelected. this is back in 1992 when ross perot announced he was running as an independent. in this clip, he is talking
about how the american people deserve a better government and his thoughts on corruption in washington. >> the american people are concerned about a government in dreadlocks. -- in deadlock. the american people are good, but they have a government that is a mess. the american people are concerned about this government they pay for that does not produce results. everybody in muscadine makes excuses. nobody takes responsibility, even when they have direct responsibility. the american people have figured that out and walk that changed. the american people are concerned about a government where people go to washington to cash in. they want a government changed so that people go as servants of the people back home and do not use government service as a steppingstone to a financial success. host: from seattle, washington, d. w. says --
also off of a male, this is all more. he writes -- jacksonville, florida. mark on the democrat line. caller: he is not getting anything done because everyone has filibuster. no one is paying attention to him. i thought i would never agree with the bpc would ever say, but as far as what she is saying now, i would vote for her.
independent next year, what do you think about what would happen to the election next year and what would cause you to consider or not consider that person? caller: i would take that right now would be the tie with the occupy movement for a endemic, but it is near impossible to get elected. the would have to stand for the views that that -- that i have. i glean libertarian. also, they will have to appeal to the mass interest you just like obama did. it would be very difficult. >> from the wall street journal --
california at on our question of why not make a case for a third- party candidate in 2012. ray on the independent line. hello. caller: i really like your work in the mornings. i hope everyone listening will really take this seriously. i was running for congress at the same time ross perot was running for precedent brigid i worked with ross perot. the most frustrating thing about that election was the media telling us -- we cannot entertain the idea of men and dependent run for anybody. i think ron paul is a great candidate. he is my favorite right now, but i do not think he wants to make public his real thoughts. if he were to run and win a two- person race, they will not have
a 50% of the vote. that means the person that wins is not the person that the majority of america wanted to be president. we have to change the system. get out of the republican and democratic hands and make run off voting so that each voter goes into the booth with his birth, second, third, and fourth choices for president and the worst vote gets taken off during the accounting until it is down to two people. then the third independent candidate has been validated to be better than all the others by the runoff system. it is no longer a case like with jesse ventura in minnesota that he won -- i believed it was 39% of the vote -- the 61% of the
voters in minnesota did not want jesse ventura to be the governor. that is what i think ron paul knows, but does not want to tell anyone because it would show that what he would really like to do is be an independent candidate, but he knows the system will not support it. host: that is ray in california. a couple of other stories, not necessarily -- there are reports that the nba and the players association has reached a tentative agreement as far as their five month-old lockout is concern and could start the season as early as christmas. another story from the wall street journal takes a look of the various tax breaks that will expire and those that will kick in over the next couple of years. just to give you a sampling --
i watched a little bet on tv the other day about a third party candidate. the problem that i have is they do not necessarily want to release who is putting the front money into the third party candidate. citizens united, i guess you do not have to, but it would still be nice to see who is supporting the front money, which is a lot of money. who is the biggest thing on the ballot? i think, for me, that we should have the opportunity to know who is backing this thing.
is it republicans? it is it democrats? thank you very much. host: the new york post has a story taking a look at the merchandise with the obama to the other 12 slogan or a logo on it. when it, to prevent obama, you may want to turn into art newsmakers program. that is tomorrow. our guest will be the co-chair
bubka the present caucus. one of the states as if he would forgive president obama bore his three years in office. >> what grade would you give up the president at the could for his worst three years in office? >> i would give our president a passing grade. >> congressman, a sea as a passing grade. -- a c is a passing grade. >> b- or c. >> is that would you not get wood -- is that what you would give the president? >> yes. i would say it's a passing grade. in terms of an endorsement, like i said, i have seen the cast of characters on the other side. i think what they bring to the discussion right now is the same kind of hard, extremist position
both on the economy and the social well-being of the country. the contrast with the president is obvious. i will support the president. host: more of that conversation available to you tomorrow on our news makers program. that is kennecott and 6:00 tomorrow on c-span. detroit, michigan. darrelle has been waiting on our independent line. caller: good morning. first of all, i would like to state the third-party idea has been around for a long time and it has always failed. we need something more effective. what we can do is deselect every incumbent candidate on the ballot. right now there is something like 899% vote for incumbents, but we -- if we voted against every incumbent on the ballot, i
promise we would get some action in washington. host: 8 your ways in by saying this -- nasa sends up a probe today to take a look at mars. specifically, this is the mars science laboratory. it includes a rover, which will be carried 300 did the 4 million miles to the planet on an unmanned rocket. in the other papers there is a picture of curiosity. that is the picture. you can read more about it in the wall street journal and other papers this morning, but the picture is provided by the wall street journal.
karl on the republican line from pennsylvania. caller: i guess that most of us saw the beautiful riding put christmas tree arrive for the obama family. the rumor goes around that the children are putting a sign on the christmas tree "santa, please bring santa a third party for christmas. i think that is about it. >> host: what do you think about the actuality of a third party in 2012? caller: a third party cannot do anything but be an all let obama out vote. host: phoenix arizona of. sarah on the democrats' line. caller: i would be for a third- party candidate if it was just to give you a third option, but usually a third-party candidate is thrown in there by one side of the others to work their campaign. you know what happens is we
become even more divided at the country. i think having the two parties is divisive enough. why would you divide it three times, four times, five times? the last guy said six times. can we get along? host: let me see if you can clarify -- the you see any value for having a third party at all? >> caller: i want the part -- the best person to be president. currently, i think that is barack obama a. at that stage is for me, i will vote for someone else. i do not want somebody in there just to have a card party and make it harder for the other candidates. i want the person to be a really a legitimate candidate. host: mesa, arizona, you are next on our independent line. caller: we need a third party.
we have to have an entire congress and president altogether with a new ideal. we need to reverse the trend of the powerful corporation in this country. host: your idea is what exactly? caller: a grassroots effort to power this company to put it -- to put -- a grassroots effort to power this country to put new people in opera. host: what do you want the people to do? caller: get the money out. host: specifically how? caller: the people in who will say no. host: is it money at that ditch you collected? is it the money when you get in? caller: barack obama -- i love
the guy and i knew he would be elected, but when he got there, he was no different from any of the rest of them. he took office and it is all the same thing. it did the better of two evils. we need to get away from the better of two evils. it just does not work. if we do not, the country is going to explode. host: occupy l.a. is to be evicted monday morning according to the maritime spread it says that "-- it says --
washington, d.c., you are next. george on the democrats' line. caller: good morning, pedro. we do not need a third party at all or a third-party candidate. they will not do anything more than what our current parties do. what we need to do, however, is to simply hold people accountable. i am a die-hard democrat, but i like what the tea party did in terms of being the tea party. they were frustrated. they organized. and they have now become accomplished within their own party. we need accountability. anytime we can have a lobbyist telling congressmen what to do, we need to get active.
the american people have been apathetic and, in some instances, they have been lazy. this is the result of it. the third party is the people. that is my opinion. host: the new york post says the whose fans will be able to the players take the court. one more call. greenwood, arkansas. vicky on the independent line. caller: i do not see how a third
party would ever work with the two parties are so divided -- are divided so badly. how in the world with three parties ever work together? host: that will be the last of the calls. we appreciate the time and effort. in the project later on in the program we are going to talk with a democratic pollster. we'll take a look at campaign 2012. if you have more questions about that, you can talk to him about these efforts. later on, in the program, we will talk about employers. they are making it harder to hire folks who are looking for work. we will have those segments coming up. first, we are going to take a look of the defense department. you have heard that -- -- you have heard the debate that the budget -- the defense department would be the hardest hit if
sequestration takes place. james carafano will be here with us to talk about that. first we want to talk to you about the lcd project. we go to various cities across the united states and highlight what is going on in the cities. our focus this week is birmingham, alabama. you can see more at c- span.org/localcontent. you will hear this interview wit -- about the bombing of the 16th street baptist church that took place. she was 15 at the time. she arrived at the church around 9:34 sunday school. here is some of our thoughts and experiences. >> as i started up the stairs to complete those reports, i passed the bathroom were my friends were. i spoke to them. they were combing hair, talking, and everyone excited in their
own way about different things. i did not linger there. as a started up the steps, when i reached the top, the phone was ringing in the church office. in those days, the church office was right behind the sanctuary. when i reached the church office and heard the phone rang, i went in and answered it. mrs. shorter, whom i work under, was not there. the male caller on the other end -- he hung up. i still had my items in my arms. i just turned and walked out into the sanctuary. only because we counted it, i know i took about 15 steps before the bomb exploded. >> was the last thing you said to them to pour you left them in the bathroom? >> see you later. but the last thing that i said.
>> this past july 4 in a ceremony held aboard the u.s.s. constitution in boston harbor, simon winchester became an american citizen. >> i decided that i would take all the necessary steps and take the exam. i got one of the questions are wrong. i had an australian brett who was also up our citizenship. i rang her and said i got one of the questions are wrong. i feel a full confessing it to you, what is the american national anthem? i'd like on "america the beautiful." she said, in my view it should be, but it is not. >> his latest book is now in paperback. what's the rest of our interview
with simon winchester sunday night on c-span's "q&a". .org ewly designed c-span go makes it easier for you to get our specials, like the new network layout so you can quickly scrambled through all the programs and even received an e-mail alert when your program is scheduled to air. there is a schedule to access our most popular series of programs, like washington journal, but tv, american history to be, and the contenders. a and the channel finder or you can find out where to watch our c-span networks on cable and satellite systems throughout the country at the all new c- span.org/ >> washington journal continues. host: our guest is james carafano of the heritage
foundation. we have for the past week about what happens if the sequestration takes place, particularly with the department of defense. in real terms, what happens? guest: they are significant. defense is less than one step of the federal budget. the way these automatic cuts are designed to go, the defense will take 50% of the cuts. defense has already been cut significantly. a lot of this is smoke and mirrors, but we are funding operations in afghanistan and iraq with supplemental funding. president obama has shifted that. but he did not add any money to the budget. that is displaced by the was already in the budget. that was a kind of cut in terms of buying you a equipment. there are about $400 plus
billion cuts. you are looking to total about $1 trillion in defense cuts. host: what do those cuts like in terms of people, in terms of programs? >> that is the $100 question. nobody believes the answer to that. the automatic cuts have not actually gone into effect. some of the cuts the president has put in, those are not in the budget yet. you are just guessing. the house armed services committee did a very good report. it is on there website. they went through and said if all of the automatic cuts go into place, what kinds of things with the defense department have to cut? normally troops and things. the army, for example, would lose maybe 40,000-50,000 soldiers. the marine corps would lose ships. the maybe would lose ships. the aircraft carriers would
lose wings. the new programs are things that have not been built yet, those things might not be built. we have what is called a nuclear triad. we have had this for ever. three different ways to launch nuclear weapons so never -- so no enemy could look at the united states. we have nuclear weapons that can be delivered by bombers. nuclear weapons that can be delivered by a land base. there is some significant question whether we would be able to maintain all three of those. one of the pillars of nuclear dependents might go from a try at to a dyad. report callede did a the strong national defense. we went through enlisted the five major areas of national security. but me see if i can do it
without having a rig. moment. asia, the middle east, homeland security, national security, depending the homeland, space, and nuclear deterrence. we listed the sorts of things as general -- generally left, right, conservative, liberal. then we went to the force structure and listed out what forces we have to deal with all of those things. we added them all up. there are some things you can use for more than one set. did we crossed them out. it cost about $700 billion a year for defense spending. we are probably going to spend in the nature of $500 billion. in terms of meeting a global commitments to do things, most people believed it is in the vital interest of the united states. we are already underfunded them. another significant issue is the last time we really rebuilt the
military was at the end of the cold war, started under ronald reagan of the presidency. we got a new class of ships. armored vehicles. we have not really rebuilt most of those things since then. that was a in the 1980's. we have been underfunding procurement buying of new equipment to about $50 billion a year. whatever people think about iraq and afghanistan, we have spent additional money on the military. almost all of that went to funding operations. none of it went to rebuilding the military. it is like a credit card or you get that credit card bill and it has this enormous pots on it and you just pay the minimum payment. the military as a similar problem. recapitalization, rebuilding equipment, buying new equipment, fixing installations, of redding installations -- that is a huge bill which has been left unpaid.
host: even as tempos in iraq and afghanistan are beginning to wind down? guest: the president already has a take on the peace dividend. he has already said he will cut that money from the budget. that does not free up people or resources. people are going to go away and resources are going to go away. the size of the pool is want to get smaller. at the same time the president says we need to increase commitments in places. we are going to put marines in australia. how are we going to do that? we are going to rotate them through their which means if you have marines on the ground for four months, u.s. to have another group of marines getting ready to deploy. you have a group of marines that have just come back. you need three to five times as many marines to support the commitment. where are they going to come from? they are not going to come from the marines that are at home, a
cause that force will get cut. host: if you want to ask questions about cost to the defense budget, here are the numbers you can call. democrats 202-737-0002, republicans 202-737-0001, independents 202-628-0205, new gingrich was asked about various ways the defense to karma could see some savings. i want you to listen to his response. >> i helped found the military reform caucus in 1981 at the beginning of the reagan buildup. it is clear there are things you can do in defense that are less expensive. it takes 15-20 years to build a weapon system at a time when apple changes technology every nine months. there is something profoundly wrong with the system.
host: the compares and defense systems to the rate of technology and how it changes. guest: wes co-sponsored that debate with cnn. of course what would happen with these automatic cuts is nothing like what speaker gingrich just said. the way the automatic cuts would go in is for every account in defense, and there are separate accounts -- there is an account to pay people, there is an account to go to installations -- the cuts are going to be apportioned across the board. that means they will not be able to do anything like gingrich said. let's invest smarter because we will just that to take a cut across the board. for example, it would be like if you had to cut your household budget and they report to say you get to cut in% of everything. 10% less for your mortgage
payment. 10% less or your netflix account. the bank is not going to be real happy that you are going to pay them to% less each month. the nature of the way these automatic cuts have gone in and the with the cuts are the administration have gone in, they are not cherry picking and saying let's find new investments. they are not doing the kind of things -- they are not making smart investment. people can go to our website, heritage.org. we identified $130 billion in inefficiencies that could be gutted. in terms of reduced spending, let's say we find hundreds of billions of dollars in savings. everyone agrees that every aspect of federal spending could
be more efficient. if we recoup those savings, it still does not solve the problems of the reinvestment we need to make. i am all for finding savings, but i think we will find the savings we do find, the efficiencies that gingrich talked about, we are going to have to reinvent them or we will have a smaller military. entitlement spending in the defense department has really been growing out of control. it is the fastest growth in the defense department. 40% in the last three years. health care, retirement, benefits -- it is growing at an unsustainable rate. it is always making the military on a portable. ironically, they keep throwing these benefits on there because they want to be for the troops
without any sense of fiscal responsibility. no sense of at these are the kinds of things that the troops need and want. most of the truth that go in, they are going to stay for a couple of years and leave. they are not going to stay through retirement. a lot of these benefits will not affect them. they are not going to be rewarded by these. host: when you do these surveys, most would say they would rather have what they call "cash benefits." guest: cash is something that comes in your paycheck. deferred is something you get later on if you stay. most people would just rather have cashed on their paychecks. we can do a substantial restructuring of our entitlements, not penalize the troops. we will still be able to recruit.
we can also honor the commitments we made our existing veterans. you have to grandfathered in people who love them in these programs. we can see a substantial savings there, particularly in military health care reform. i am a retired military veteran. i get care for life. it's a great program. i love it. i cannot remember the last time i actually used it. my premiums are ridiculously cheap. host: we are talking about defense cuts in u.s. military, go ahead caller: i have not read much of debt -- about uganda led league.
are you advocating major were there? guest: i don't think anybody is advocating for that. i and that would be a huge mistake. we established africa command which is responsible for overseeing u.s. military operations in that part of the world. the argument for some of the command was not to give the u.s. military more involved. it was to get u.s. military less involved. this came after libya when there were many people that wanted a u.s. military intervention in libya. president bush refused to do that. lydia came out ok. -- libya can out of character it ok. we were doing less deployments and we were not jumping on every request for military forces that came along the ugandan operation is constrained. i was more concerned about the
libyan operation which was a huge investment in u.s. military capability. it put nato operations on the line and it was out of proportion as to what u.s. interests were in that area. host: ronald gumm as this money why the dod is not audited? guest: are audited. -- they are audited. it is difficult to add all those audits up. it would be very difficult because you are comparing different kinds of business practices. i don't think any complex company in the world could
produce the kind of audit that would let you see everything compared and one white. the problem with all the taping -- auditing, it actually makes some things work. in some ways, it has complicated business practices. they said that if you disagree with the finding of the audit that was an automatic referral for possible criminal investigation. essentially, the audit had the power to decide something was illegal or not. that is not the purpose of an audit. auditing is an important tool but it is not a silver bullet answer. we can do better but when we added more requirements for auditing, sometimes the auditing
makes things worse. when you think back to the huge political scandal -- the huge economic scandals we have in this country whether it was exxon or the meltdown, there is lots meltdownauditing being done. the audit tors made things worse by non measuring the right things. host: illinois, democrats line, good morning. caller: i get tickled when i hear right wingers talk about american interests when we are talking about defense. this country as over 800 military bases in 160 countries. most of them were set up to protect rich people businesses. they don't even belong to america. they have moved there
corporations overseas to avoid paying taxes. we are protecting bat guano factories. this is just incredible. we've got to stop maintaining these bases. every base should be looked at it we are protecting rich people pause businesses when they should be providing their own security, we've got to pull out. 800 bases and there is no telling how many secret bases there are everywhere. guest: that is a great question. that is the one thing that the pentagon has been looking at. the number 800 does not make sense. that number fluctuates and it includes everything from the tiniest handful of people in an embassy to a large base. there are about 35 major u.s. military bases around the world.
all of them are designed primarily to support the use of u.s. military troops. if you don't like the bases, bring all the troops home but the problem is you will need twice as many ships and people and planes. to get there and it will take you twice as long. it would make things twice as expensive. host: where are most of the bases located? guest: people ask why we still have bases in europe. we have closed a lot of bases in europe. i had two tours in western europe and every place i was stationed is long gone. we will probably close about 11 facilities over the next few years. the basing in western europe is to protect u.s. forces into the middle east and other places and the world. and in -- in the world.
cases, the u.s. does not pick up the cost of some of these facilities. south korea has a major u.s. military commitment and 50% of the basing costs in south korea is paid for by the south koreans. we should look for military efficiency and we should look to save money where we can because we need to reinvest in military. we will probably not find big savings in bases. host: what about the base realignment commission? guest:the brac mostly a political tool. every congressman does not want to see a job leave their district and if you have a base in a district or a state, regardless of how useful it is, they will fill obligated to protect it.
they cannot put this process. they did a review of all the bases in the united states and they will say which ones we don't need. and presented to congress. overseas, you don't have to do that because they are not in somebody's district. they do look at basing overseas. there have been many studies and people should take comfort. if you look at the large and medium facilities we have, they are very different than they were 20 years ago because they have shifted to where u.s. interests have shifted and where our needs have shifted. i have not just sat there because they have always been there. host: south carolina are independent line, go ahead caller: i am of the opinion that the entire military budget needs to be cut in half. i say that because if you look
at during the eisenhower administration and the cold war, you will notice that defense spending was actually lower during the cold war than it is now which makes no sense. we have no enemy anywhere near the level of the soviet union. you can look at china which has around 10% of our current defense spending. russia has about 6%. the amount of money we're spending on our budget does not match the threat we are facing. guest: i think you make a great point in that we should look at what we are putting in defense overtime. in many ways, we should look at defense like a mortgage or insurance. it is there to ensure the safety and security of the country. some days you may use it as some days you may not by you want to
consistently invest in it so it is always there. i think that is the right way to look at it. the numbers are interesting. where are we today? as a percentage of national wealth, we are spending about half what we averaged during the cold war. we spent much, much more during the cold war in defense. we average about 8% during the cold war and we're now at about 4%. host: what about gross domestic product at the time? guest: as a percentage of the federal budget it is interesting. eisenhower talked about the military-industrial complex and military spending was half the military budget -- federal budget. we spend more on social security and medicare and medicaid now. then we do on defense.
in a few years, the national debt will be larger than defense. if people are concerned about federal spending in washington and our ability to pay for government and services, they need to focus on social security, medicare, and medicare which are growing at an unsustainable rate. forget about cutting defense and half, we could take defense spending today to zero and did you don't do anything about the social security, medicare, and medicaid, in four years it would consume the entire federal budget. host: utah, republican line, good morning. caller: i had a job offer that was rescinded. i am heading profiles and other ones that are in different states.
are these positions going to keep being rescinded. ? i'm sure many people are concerned and quite worried about their positions being cut. i would like to know -- do i still have a chance to maintain employment for the government? i am ready, highly willing, and highly able to go and perform work for any of the defense contractors in a federal capacity. i want to know if i will have a chance and have the respect for the people for already employed. they are at less pay. we want employment.
i would like to know if these positions will keep being rescinded. guest: if you're looking for a job in the federal government and defense or the military, the reality is you are in for a wild ride. i don't think anybody knows how exactly the cuts will play out over the next couple of years. many people will be making decisions and many of them will get conservative about bringing on staff because they don't know what their budget will be like. many people will get let go. these cuts will raise unemployment. i have never been an advocate of spending money on defense as a jobs program more economic stimulus program. it will put a lot of people out of work. host: the president spoke about the work of the super committee at its failure to come up with consensus and what happens when it comes to automatic spending
cuts. he talked about efforts to veto efforts to stop the cuts from going into effect. this is what he had to say -- >> some in congress are trying to on to the automatic spending cuts. my message to them is simple -- no. i will veto any effort to get rid of those automatic spending cuts domestic and defense spending. there will be no easy off-ramps on this one. we need to keep the pressure up to compromise, not turn off the pressure. the only way these spending cuts will not take place is if congress gets back to work and agrees on a balanced plan to reduce the deficit by at least $1.20 trillion. that is exactly what they need to do. that is the job they promised to do. they still got one year to figure it out. host: he said he will veto any
efforts to turn back the cuts -- guest: it is not smart. these cuts are across the board which don't differentiate between good programs and wasteful programs. in all likelihood because you do cut in official like that, it will wind up costing you more money. if your interested in saving money and having an efficient government, the across-the-board cuts of the worst possible thing to do we also know it will probably never happen. the federal government has never stuck to a sequester over a long period time. , never. it is unlikely bar and. it is again about plain chicken. -- playing chicken. the president made significant tax increases for republicans and conservatives in congress are against that. one thing that was done in the
balanced budget control act of 2011 which set up these automatic cuts was to really put defense on the chopping block. conservatives care about defense and they don't like tax cuts. i think the administration wants to offer them a choice of a tax hike or defense. i think it is about playing politics. it is probably not the smartest thing to do coming out of the box that you will hold everything hostage. congress will not stand for that. host: what out -- what about the resolve by next year? guest: congress will do something to avoid the automatic cuts but it will occur in the middle of a presidential campaign and there will be an awful lot of politics. the one thing they have been consistent on is they kicked the can down the road. everybody on all sides is looking for a way to kick the can down the road past the next presidential election and to get
some kind of political benefit out of the debate. host: illinois, you are next, thank you for waiting on our democrats line. caller: this is indiana. host: i'm sorry, the state with all the jobs. caller: this country knows nothing, absolutely nothing. our media is entertainment now. i want this guy sitting there and all the other thing ttanks to know that there billionaire'' will not get their way. i want everyone to go on youtube and type in michael connell who was murdered because he stole the election in 2000, 2004, and 2008. i am curious that our media as never investigated this and has
never reported it they are trying to do this again. $40 billion is in a rainy day fund for sells a security. did you hear that in the media? host: what about the defense department? caller: my two sons served in the military. they are now 48 and 50. the first bush went to the carlyle group. they went around the world buying munitions. host: you can address that if you wish. guest: she raises the point about think tanks and i work at the heritage foundation. we are completely donor-funded. most of the donors are small donors.
we have very small corporate giving. host: any of that from the defense department? guest: we don't do contract work and we don't take any money from the defense department. i don't think represent billionaires'. i think think tanks play an important role. the presidential candidates' debate we sponsored last week was the first debate ever sponsored by a think tank. it was different because all the people of the questioners in the audience were experts. not that average americans should not get a chance to ask questions because they should but i think it was great to have an opportunity for people live and breed and worked as all the time to ask questions and this debate was a national security and foreign policy. they cornered the those people for 90 minutes and i was really pleased. i thought would be difficult to
walk away and not get a sense of who those people would be as commander in chief. host: what would those people do with the defense department should they win? guest: were all agreed that if you want to risk -- sustain the defense capability we have today, that will be very difficult without doing some very significant fiscal reforms. they all recognize that keeping the defense we have today will be a huge challenge. we did a plan, our own budget plan called saving the american dream which is on our website, heritage.org. we competed with four other think tanks. host: commission to buy a home? guest ?
commissioned by whom? guest: it did not raise taxes and a fully funds defense for the next 10 years. host: savannah, georgia, republican line. caller: good morning. thank you for having vespertine i have a couple of issues. i keep hearing about the baby boomers. i am a baby boomer. i am 66 years old. did they not see it coming? it was like a freight train headed for a freight train. you know it is coming. why not do something about it before it comes? my other question -- my son designs and builds some kind of
thing for the military. he is called from savannah, ga. down to panama city, drove down there to fix this thing, whatever it is, and it took in two hours to get on the base which is understandable, i guess. he got to the job site at 3:00 in the afternoon. a military guard standing over him and he started unloading his truck to work on the piece of equipment and a guard said the close at 3:30. he loaded his stuff back in the truck went back to the motel and came back in the morning. in the morning, he located the problem and he went to his truck and they got a calibrated to put it on the machine.
the guard said to wait a minute. did you just put something on that machine? he said yes, it is working. the guard said he is not authorized to let him do that. he asked what he wants him to do. do you want me to put this machine back to where it is not working? host: what is the question? caller: he had to take the part back off the machine, go back to savannah, and they called monday for him to come back down. he said he was booked for two weeks. host: thank you, caller. guest: i was in the military for 25 years and i think i lived that story. when you look at the way our population bubble and the enormous amount of people over the next decade who will retire on seoul's security -- on social
security and the cost behind that and the fact that we have been raiding the trust fund forever, didn't we see that coming and the answer is of course we did. like good politicians, we in washington, as a city did nothing about it. this ties directly into defense and brings up an object lesson. the last time we are in a situation we were in now was in the 1990's under bill clinton. we had a democratic president and republicans took over congress and said we want a balanced budget and clinton said if you want a balanced budget, ok. he cut defense spending which he got away with as it was after the cold war. he gutted to defense spending, he held discretionary spending in place for a couple of years and did nothing about social security and medicare. it was like taking a heroin fix.
the problem is just bigger. what do we do now? cut defense spending, fiddle around with other discretionary spending, did nothing about social security and medicare and medicaid and do the same mistake again. the problem is much bigger now. when we come back in 2020 to do this again, the problem will be even bigger. if you want to know where this is going, look at greece and portugal, that is america's future. flat economic growth, unsustainable social programs, dwindling capacity to defend yourself -- that is us and 15 or 20 years. portugal got into junk status. we still have time, i believe, to get government spending under control, get back to solid economic growth, and not go through another crippling defense drawdown.
the next time, eight years from now, it will be more difficult. host: what lies ahead for leon panetta with the potential cuts? guest: he will be like the rest of us. he will be riding the wave in the next 12 months because nobody knows what will happen. i doubt we'll get a budget next year and will probably be a continuing resolution. everybody is playing ice hockey until after 2013. host: calif., independent line, go ahead caller: i am an independent. guest: so why, good for us. caller: it is hard not to take a democratic stance listening to this conversation. what i hear is very on balance. i hear every detail about the
military and yet when it comes to other types of spending which would be social spending, it is just cut and dried. that is what makes me frustrated. in the beginning, you said the things that most people consider important in this country. i get frustrated with that because i don't believe that. i don't usually agree with what you say most people consider is important. i would prefer that we get away from the way military is going. it is like let's force a new type of strategy for defense. it is like the military ends up with some of the deaths and damage people and social spending is helping people.
i just understand how republicans can be so adamant and so informed on military and yet, in one swipe, right of all social spending. guest: i am not writing off all social spending. everything should be efficient and effective. military spending and social spending. it is not what we spent, it is how well we spend it and how effective it is. that's to be the standard for every program. we should hold both sides to the same accountability. you could cut all the discretionary programs in the federal budget including welfare but it still will not balance the budget. social security, medicare, and medicaid will still eat up everything. cutting defense is not a partisan position.
the president and secretary of defense have said these automatic cuts will be damaging to defense. that is the position that everybody in both parties agree with. host: secretary leon panetta painted it as a hollow force. guest: the president does not even disagree with that. he is the commander in chief and has no desire to try to meet america's national security interest with a force that is inadequate. bill clinton did 7 military cuts over his term but at the end of his term, he realized he needed to stop the bleeding. he knew he could i go any lower. on the path we are on now, we are likely to see a smaller and less capable military than when president obama came into office. host: louisiana, democrats line,
go ahead. hello there. i have a two-part question. i have a suggestion anyway. it is about the military. i want to know who watches over the store? who buys the medical supplies for the military? who was watching over it? guest: that is a great question. the answer is congress. the irony is congress is a big part of the problem. somebody might want to protect
something in their district, in many cases, a congressional rules make defense spending less efficient and less productive. there's probably no area more ripe for savings then in logistics, by and supplying goods and services to the military. we estimated you could save $90 billion. fed ex moves from a to b and maybe five people touch the part but in the military, maybe 50 people will touch the same part. host: how much of that spending is because of contractor work? guest: most of it, but some of it is because were passed to go to a government facility and they won't let it go to a contractor and some of it is because of the inefficiencies of the contractor. probably the poster child for this is the scandal recently --
the irony is that it is somebody in the military where they were funneling money to a contractor and these are alaska-based companies, native-american companies. their companies that congress set up for these native american communities where they could set up a defense company and get no- bid contracts. get a couple of native americans on the board and they will hire some washington company to run this and they will get the small dividend checks. these are not companies that are benefiting native americans. the fact that there automatically get in no-bid contract was a scandal. it turned out to be huge amounts of corruption. whose fault is that? let's give the defense department credit for fun and
the corruption but congress set up a situation where it was ripe for an efficient activity and corruption. shame on congress. host: pennsylvania, democrats line. caller: we are in afghanistan for oil in the caspian region, trying to get a pipeline into china and we recently close our borders because hezbollah moved their military base in cuba. should cuting we spending on military but we should be closer to our borders. we are in afghanistan and they
have oil and gas deposits in the caspian region. guest: this gives me a chance to talk about border security. i think it is important. there is an important role for our military there because of the experiences we had in iraq and afghanistan. a lot of ways you can combat the insurgencies their, those techniques are very useful for going after the transnational criminal cartels. somebody asked a mexican colonel what his vision is for his country. he said his vision is for it to be like it was 10 years ago when we showed up, the cartel's ran away but now they fight back. there are many people in moscow that want their country back -- are many people in mexico that want their country back.
there is a lot we can do with the u.s. military, and not boot on the ground but working with them. that is the first kind of thing that will fall off the table when these cuts go down. there will not be training or resources for the border. they are automatic cuts. those things will just get swept away. it does not matter that they are important and it will help secure our borders and they will help fight these cartels and help restore -- reduce the level of violence. the cuts are just mindless. host: david carafano, if you want to hit -- read his research and others, heritage.org is the website, thank you. guest: thank you for cspan. it is a great service. host: will take a look at the question if employers are finding it more difficult to hire. up next, we'll look at
[no audio] >> this story of civil-rights movement cannot be told about birmingham, alabama and this weekend, book-tv and american history tv look behind the scenes at the history and literary life of the southern city. on c-span 2, september 15, 1963 -- a bomb killed four young girls for the story is through the eyes of a survivor and friend. even under the hazardous working conditions, people fought to work the cotton mill in jacksonville. we'll talk to the day after the mill closed. on c-span 3, stanford university history professor on how martin luther king jr.'s letter from a birmingham jail set the tone for the civil-rights movement. also a tour of the furnaces opened in 1881, the blast furnace that per produce iron for 100 years britain on sunday
a 6:00 eastern as the curator continues with a discussion on birmingham during the great depression. this weekend on c-span 2 and 3. >> the newly designed c- span.org web site has choices to make it easy to predict for you to watch today's events. it is easier for you to get our schedule with new features. you can quickly scroll for all our program scheduled on the networks. you can receive an e-mail alerts when your program is scheduled there's a section to access our most popular series and programs. there is a handle -- and the channel finder is you can find out how to quickly watch our network on cable and satellite systems around the country at the all new c-span.org. >> "washington journal" continues. host: we are here to talk about
congress. we will also take a look at campaign 2012. as far as your work, who do research for? guest: we work for democratic candidates and progressive groups up and down the ballot. we are working for debbie stabenow and amy klobuchar. host: the super committee could not come to a deal does this affect our people polled levers next year? guest: sure, the public as a low view of congress now and their ability to get things done. any deal they would have come to would be a bad deal for the country considering where the republicans are going but politically a bad deal for democrats. it would have required cuts to medicare and social security which the public is against.
one of the big advantages democrats have is the republican vote for the paul ryan plan which is a hugely unpopular vote for them and we will use that up and down the ballot against those candidates. even more important for the country and for democrats is that this keeps the issue of the bush tax cuts on the table. i was worried that there would have taken off the table. democrats did that in 2010 i think that was a mistake republic is on our side in terms of wanting the bush tax cuts to expire. this'll be the center of the 2012 campaign and as a democrat i want to campaign on that and i want republicans to explain why they want to and medicare and raise taxes on middle-class and continue subsidies for the oil companies but why they want make the wealthiest pay a little bit more in taxes. the country wants to know that, too.
host: how much can the general economic situation casts doubt bring to cascade down to candidates? host: no one is -- known, is elected with over 7% unemployment. what happens between now and then in the economy will make a difference. if things start to improve, that will help them a little bit. if things do not, it will be problematic. that is a big deal for obama to climb. it translates to incumbents of all parties. if you tell me that when president obama was elected that he would face reelection with a high unemployment number, i
would say he would not win. i don't think that is the case but the economy makes it difficult. he's got a very weak field of republicans against him. the republicans want to make this a referendum about the economy and president obama. the democrats want to make this a choice between their governing philosophy and the republican governing philosophy. if they do that, they will win because the public would prefer the democratic governing philosophy over the republican governing philosophy right now. that goes up and down the ticket. incumbents from the democratic party will have the same thing. they will have the same struggle dealing with the economy. they are the party in power so they will have to explain that. republican incumbents in the house are not going to have an easier time. incumbents in both parties will have issues. you could see an election or the senate switches parties and the
house switches parties. they could throw a lot of incumbents out. host: if what we saw in 2010 existed into 2012 -- guest: i think it will be a different election. 2010 favorite the republicans and in 2011, the midterm elections we just saw, that was good for democrats for the one in ohio the one in mississippi. they did very well in new jersey. i think that showed it will not be 2010 again which city -- which was a huge year for republicans. it may be like 2000 or 2004 where everything was split.
the independents don't like anybody but the animus is spread around. host: what caused that? guest: it is a big-time overreach. you see that with the paul ryan plan which is beyond the pale for voters. in ohio, a look at john kasich and we do a lot of work in michigan and we see the same thing with rick snyder and use it at the state level and the national level, tea party believers got elected but they did not get elected because of the philosophy. they got elected because voters were upset with democrats. they misinterpreted the mandate. they thought the country was behind them and they wanted extreme governments% the push that through. that is not what the public wants. the measures for the republican party have fallen off a cliff. nbc had a poll that showed a
republican party with a negative rating of 14 per in democrats are even but the republican party is negative. this works to the democrats' favor. man is ourew bau guest until 9:00 15th. the phone numbers are on your screen journal@cspan is the e-mail. 242 republicans in the house, 192 democrats, one vacancy and you said you think a flip may be coming. guest: i think it is possible but not inevitable. i think democrats have a good
shot at retaking the house. redistricting is doing better for democrats. we saw the course overturn of the gerrymandering in texas. it looks like it will give democrats a few extra seats produce see that in california, colorado, arizona, florida. i think you are saying this shift away from the republicans. democrats were behind three or four points and now we are ahead of three or four points. i think president obama is finally moving of this message about being a grown up in the room to find a compromise. he is taking a much more aggressive populist tone. it started defining the choice in the election. before there was no choice.
this puts the republicans under more of a microscope and they are not doing well things are slowly moving in our direction host: jacksonville, fla., democrats line, you are first. good morning. caller: how're you doing today? the republicans especially in the house, they seem to be holding everything hostage, everything was doing fine until the 2010 elections. we're getting about 300,000 jobs per month per it all of a sudden, the republicans come in and everything stops. not a coincidence. they keep saying we will hold obama responsible. the american people are not fools. i cannot see the republican
president joining the republican congress that threatens social security, medicare. it makes no sense to me. guest: it doesn't make sense to me either but i made democratic partisan varian. i think you are seeing this articulator. what it would mean for a republican president and a republican congress would mean ending so security and medicare an extension of the bush tax cuts. that is an argument the red -- resonates with voters and that is the argument that president obama and the democrats will make. if they can make that well, i think it will work for them. democrats need to be worried about is the idea that we are
the party of taxes and spending and that is something that has been ingrained in voters and is our big vulnerability going forward. democratic candidates, one thing that could get them in trouble is reverting to the old school democratic standards of protecting all government programs and not realizing that people want accountability in government. they want to make sure that all federal programs are good and make sure we get rid of the ones that don't work. it democrats can convince voters that they think the government needs to be accountable and tax dollars should be spent on things that work, they can disarm that philosophy. if they don't, the voters that can out and voted against us in 2010 will continue to do so. that will be a big -- that will be a big fight on that front. host: here is another prediction
-- guest: if you want to bet $5 on that, i would bet. there is no doubt that the democrats will take some seats. we lost some elections but so did the republicans in upstate new york which was a big loss for the republicans prepar. we do an independent group that does polling in battleground districts. in our last poll, we saw the 50 most vulnerable republicans. it was an even split between republicans and democrats. if you have the election today, democrats would pick up seats. would they pick them up in the house? that is up in the air. i don't think they will lose the house in 2012.
host: independent line, good morning. caller: everybody is talking about all these threatened cuts to medicare and social security and yet they all want to extend the payroll tax cut into next year and this year. that is the main and only revenue stream entisols security and medicare and medicaid. everybody wants to cut it in half. if you are on the table in an operating room and bleeding out four pints per minute and you can only in fuse two pints per minute because you cut back the amount of revenue or blood available, how long do think you will live the? ? you guys are cutting social security on your own by cutting the revenue stream. guest: you raise a good point. voters are concerned about the revenue stream. when you talk about the payroll
tax and ask if people would oppose our favor that, overwhelmingly, they favor the payroll tax cut. when they called themselves the security tax, they are against it. they won no revenue loss to social security which voters support. it is dangerous to social security and dangers for political parties that push it forward. voters support raising the cap on the tax verso -- for payroll taxes. raising the cap is something the voters supported the something that will shrink social security and medicare. host: this is off a twitter --- guest: i am a progressive
liberal democrat but i think blue dogs have an important role in the party. -u don't want to get to homogenous. i think they are an important part of the party. in the republican party, there is no left or moderate. the tea party is going after richard lugar who is one of the remaining moderate. we don't want to do that in our party. i doubt that we are moving in that direction bu. host: the democrat from texas has announced he will retire and he is the head of the congressional spanish caucus. how does that involve next year? guest: i don't think that plays a lot into larger picture.
univision came out with a big paul obama vs romney in the states with the most hispanics. his lead is higher than when he won in 2008. republicans are claiming they can take more hispanic support this year. i don't think that is the case. you are saying what happened with newt gingrich saying we must be humane to immigrants and democrats jumping all over him. it is pushing hispanics away from the republican party. the hispanic voting block continues to grow in -- especially in states like mexico, colorado, nevada, and they will play an increasingly large percentage part of the electorate. that will be an important part for the democrats to build a to win. i believe present obama will
take a margin as big as he did last time. voters turned out in large numbers in 2008. some of the hispanics are not as enthusiastic. president obama could not get immigration reform through. he has been hard line and some of the deportation stuffe and that has turned off some hispanics. white collar white voters think he is for emigration and hispanics are upset about his policies. i think he will have to engage them and make sure they turn out. the ones that turnout will vote democratic a strong as they ever have. host: west virginia, good morning. caller: i would like to know why they keep demonizing the rich people. i'm not jealous of people who are wealthy because most of them earned it.
the democrats have divided the country completely intwo, right down the middle between the rich and the poor because they demonize the rich people. guest: i disagree with that assessment. i don't demonize the rich and i don't think democrats do. people who have been successful and have worked themselves up from the bottom to make a lot of money are some of the backbone of this country. look at warren buffett who was out there saying to tax me more. he's not demonizing the rich. he is not demonizing himself and bill gates says the same thing. if you look to the tax rates of different income taxes, the taxes on the wealthy are the lowest they have been in decades. the middle class is working as hard as they can and they are falling farther behind because of the policies of george bush and the republicans. your taxpayer money is being given away to those at the top,
the oil companies, the big corporations. i think that policy that the democrats think is bad policy as to be average americans. people want the rich to pay their fair share which they have not been doing. host: and dependent line from pennsylvania, go ahead caller: if the rich need to pay their fair share at 50% of taxpayers pay no income tax at all, how can you say the rich are not being soaked. ? guest: i am not a tax policy experts but the 50% that don't pay income taxes are paying payroll taxes and retell taxes. i reject the argument from some people that those in the bottom and of the spectrum are not paying their fair share. host:
guest: i agree we have not done enough. the citizens united ruling was a travesty that hurts our democracy. people believe that corporate interests buy politicians and i think that is true to a large degree. they don't want to see all that money in politics because it is bad for the country. that is a separate thing from the assault on voting that the republicans are saying in many states. they are trying to make it harder for minorities and young people to vote. republicans know that the more people but the worse it is for them. they are trying to introduce a modern day polltax that will disenfranchise a lot of black
people and hispanics and young people. i think that is wrong and democrats need to do their utmost to push that back. we had a victory in the last election in maine where they pulled back these voter restrictions and hopefully we will see more host: 51 democrats, 47 republicans in the senate and you say there could be a switch. guest: it is difficult for democrats. 23 democratic seats are up only 10 republicans see up. democrats are defending more ground and we have more incumbents. i am hopeful the democrats can hold a senate but it will be difficult. we have a good new candidate in north dakota. she is leading the current congress meant. man,. you have elizabeth warren running in massachusetts which is good for us.
you've got connie mack running in florida. we will see how that plays with bill nelson. there are difficult elections up and down the ballot. we need to hold three -- we need to keep losses to three or fewer. and told the senate and that will be tough. host: mississippi, republican line. oxford, mississippi, republican line. caller: can i explain was going to happen in this election? first of all, mr. romney will be the next president of the united states, and the reason he will be is because of the electoral college. 173 electoral votes in 22 states went to mccain, but in this election, those same 22 states
will represent 179. all 22 states will go to the republican candidate. of course, the 179 electoral votes -- not one of those 22 states will go to mr. obama. there were eight states that are battleground states that it is impossible for mr. obama to win. florida. all republicans. the house, the senate, the governor. north carolina has a democratic governor, a woman who will lose the next election by a very large margin. 15 electoral votes. virginia just switched their senate over to the republican party. that state is totally republican now. new hampshire has a democratic governor, three-term governor, but the house and senate have flipped. wisconsin is totally republican. michigan -- can you imagine? michigan has flipped 17
electoral votes. ohio is totally republican. host: your question, sir? caller: indiana. the point that i'm trying to bring out -- would you let me get the point across to the people watching? it is impossible for the democratic party to take back the presidency in the selection. guest: he laid out a list and made the point that the electoral college mass is harder. reapportion of some of the electoral college votes have moved to states like texas that he is not going to win. there are states that he won last time like indiana that he is not going to in that -- but i definitely do not agree with the assessment that it is impossible when. there are many different ways that president obama can get to 270, and you see that in the way the white house is running the election. president obama could lose ohio, virginia, florida, all states he won last time, and still get 272 electoral votes peer the
southwest is a new battleground that as part of the strategy. colorado, nevada, and arizona is amply which was not last time. if he won the states, he could afford to lose a state like ohio. i disagree with the sentiment that florida could not be one. i think the governor there is one of president obama's secret weapons. he is one of the most unpopular governors in the nation. i think you will see president obama run against the governor rick scott. same thing in wisconsin where scott walker has overreached. there are problems. obama pose the biggest problems are in the rust belt state he won last time with there is a lot of blue collar workers. we are seeing some erosion for him. >> -- host: a story this morning that vice president biden's focus will be on ohio, consulting, and florida. guest: that a smart.
he has a good connection with some of those white, working- class voters. i think in the end, he will give the states, but he will have to work very hard. even if he loses ohio, there are places like florida, virginia, north carolina, which i think he can still hold, and the states out west, which give him an option. host: does the economy have to change numbers-wise? guest: i was thinking putting more resources into those states. anything he can do to improve the economy can help us, but republicans in congress will not let that happen. it is clear that republicans will not allow obama to have a victory. i believe they would rather have the economy do poorly than do well because as mitch mcconnell
said, his number one priority is making sure president obama does not get a second term. i think that is policy malpractice for the american people that his number one policy is not to improve the economy but to make sure the president does not get elected. host: 10 more minutes with our guests. robert, democrats line. good morning. caller: good morning. how are you? i am a retired military veteran and i followed the program this morning for the entirety that you guys have been on this morning. there is not a lot of elegant conversation, but one thing i want to make a point on this -- there are several points of view that really kind of touch my base.
the democratic and republican system, as it evolves in washington these days, someone made the point that money -- and i think it has been said many times over -- that you have the lobbyists there tossing large sums of money and they really do not have to acknowledgement they are, which group they represent, and when the people leave the district and come to the white house, i think they need to get back to the viewpoint of the people. our elected representatives should work for the people. but tell me -- how is it working today as far as the current view of what is going on? you had a broad spectrum from
different points of view. money is actually in the forefront of what is being broadcast across the globe. host: thanks, caller. guest: in terms of what the american people think, i think they largely agree with you. they are very angry with too much money in politics, too much money from special interests on both sides of the aisle. i think they are right -- the system we have right now is rigged to give too much power the special interests. i think it would be better for our democracy if we tried to crack down on that and get our congress more responsive to the people, and i think that is something the people really want as well. host: this is from mike freeman of what we're. guest: it is time for that, and i think that is happening.
what you have seen is the rise of the so-called superpac's on both sides. they concentrate on nothing but fact checking with the gop candidates say both in the debates and elsewhere, and i think you are seeing that get out. i think we need to continue to work on that and continue to make sure that the media picks up on it. as we know, the media does not always cover things even the in my opinion, but we are working on it and i think it is starting to get out. host: there is a story in the "wall street journal" today taking a look at the possibility of a third-party candidate entering the field. guest: i think it will certainly shake things up. you had a significant portion voting for that third party.
there is so much anger of both parties. there is probably more openness right now to a third-party candidate. i think it made things very interesting. i think it helps obama because it splits the anti-obama vote, but it would shake things up. caller: i have a question for mr. baumann. i also want to make a comment about the dumbing down of america. one of the things that over and over again i hear -- and this guy who was last supposedly the who understands the monetary thing and yet he cannot even pronounced fiscal correctly. host: you have to keep moving, caller. go ahead. caller: as far as the pollster, what kind of poles are they?
are they slanted in some way? what is the nature of the polls? guest: we try very hard to never do slanted polls because we want to give our clients reliable data. pollsters certainly can write slanted questions to get the answers that they want. that does not help our clients by just blowing smoke at them, and giving them the numbers that one does not help them get reelected if they are not the right numbers, so we try very hard to write our poll to be balanced and even and get an accurate results. we get a representative sample of every population we are looking at and make sure it has enough democrats and republicans in it and end up of every kind of person by age, gender, race and tried to get the most accurate results possible. host: when do people start paying attention? guest: i think people are paying attention now. we are moving to such a
24/7/0365 a year campaign cycle. for my profession, it is good news. i do not know if it is good news for the body politic. we are always pulling. host: independent line, your next. caller: i would like to make a couple of comments. first of all, regarding disenfranchising the voters, when i lived in illinois, i could have taken an id card with a picture and paid $10 and it was for five years and it permitted me to do everything. i do not want to hear the idea d's. people cannot get i some states are even paying for it. second, regarding the pollster. you are all the time saying nbc. as an independent, i can tell you that nbc is not independent. he should choose people who are independent and not people who
are affiliated with a station like nbc, abc, or cbs. three, regarding always the rich -- in reality, if you go on the dot-com, you will find that 40% of the congress members of democrats are millionaires, of which at least 50% of them became millionaires while they were in the congress. i really do not care which party it is. the problem is that both of the parties are working too much with lobbies and it is about time -- and another point. regarding the policy about our -- host: we will leave it there, caller. guest: a lot of points. i agree there's too much money in politics. first of all, the nbc poll is done with nbc and the "wall street journal," which is not exactly a liberal organization. as is done by one republican pollster and a democratic
pollster. they do a bipartisan poll, and very good one, and that is what most of these organizations do. they do a bipartisan or non- partisan poll, and i think they are pretty credible. host: good morning. alan, republican line. caller: i commend you for coming out -- i probably did not agree with anything you are saying, but at least at the beginning of the program, you said that your party does not want to pass a budget. they do not want to put their name on anything. they have been passing continuous resolutions. when is the last time that your party in the senate has passed a budget? has it been over 900 days? did nancy pelosi in her last year running the senate -- because the republicans have been only in power for about 10 months. your party had it for 24 months. your party did not pass a budget. they have been doing this continuous resolution. the only people to put their name on how to fix this country on a budget has been the bryan
bill. you may not like it. you may think it is drastic, but they put their name on it. host: we heard some of the same type of arguments coming out of the supercommittee, especially among republicans, as well. guest: i do not think that is the case. president obama put out a plan that in my view was too far to the right pure all long, democrats from obama to the simpson-bowle committee. to make cuts to medicare. you have not seen the republicans to the same. republicans have not offered a compromise. do not tell me that the latest tommey -- toomey offer was because it was not. ronald reagan raised taxes every year of his presidency. he was saying some of the same things as president obama is talking about, how millionaire's
should not pay more than the secretaries. according to today's republican party, ronald reagan is a socialist because today's republican party is totally willing -- unwilling to compromise. yes, republicans put out a solution, but a solution that is tied it -- entirely unacceptable to 75% of the american population here democrats put out a solution that i think goes too far, but they are willing to compromise and solve the problems of the day. democrats are not perfect. i will tell you that. i think some in our party have not taken spending and accountability seriously enough, but it is clear that president obama has taken it seriously and italy to make sacrifices and the republican party has not. host: -- and been willing to make sacrifices and the republican party has not. host: angela from the republican party. caller: i think it is a sad day when the congress -- people need jobs, and when they have the jobs bill out there, i just
cannot believe that as much as people need jobs today, that they would not pass the jobs bill for the teachers and firemen and policemen and also for infrastructure. they know that this money would help the economy. i could not believe it. it is just outrageous. i think that also in support of the president, this is ridiculous. i may not have even like president bush, but i did always support my president. guest: i think that is very true. i do not think any president in the history of our country has been treated with this level of the stain and disrespect. i was not a fan of president bush, either, but he was president of united states, and i respected that office, which a lot of republicans do not do right now. i think republicans in congress do not want to do anything that could help president obama
pierre the american public agrees. a plurality of about 10 points agrees that republicans would rather see obama fail then help him improve the economy. i think it is unfortunate. i think the jobs bill that he put forward, the infrastructure bill, the firefighters bill would be good for the economy, but unfortunately, republicans will never agree with that. host: one more question from twitter -- guest: you can or you cannot. i do not require that you do, but i think they are an accurate representation and i think it is good for the american leaders to know where the public is. this is supposed to be democracy and it is supposed to be following the american people. host: thanks for your time. in our last segment, we will consider the question of whether employers are making it difficult to hire. our guest will tell us more. he teaches management principles at the wharton school of business. we will be right back.
[captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national cable satellite corp. 2011] the story of the civil rights movement cannot be told without birmingham, alabama. this weekend, but it be an american history tv look behind the scenes at the history and literary life of the southern city. on c-span2, september 16, 1963, a bomb rocked the 16th street baptist church, killing four young girls. that story through the eyes of a survivor and friend. even under the hazardous working conditions, people fought to work at the cotton mill in jacksonville. pulitzer prize winner rick bragg on the day after the mill closed. and on c-span3, stanford
university history professor jonathan bass on how martin luther king, jr.'s letter from a birmingham and gail -- jail set the tone for the civil rights movement. also, the sloss furnace produces iron for nearly 10 years. the discussion on birmingham during the great depression. this weekend on c-span2 and 3. this past july 4 in a ceremony held aboard the uss constitution in boston harbor, simon winchester became an american citizen. >> i decided that i would take all the necessary steps to become a citizen. i got one of the questions wrong. i had a friend who was also up for citizenship and i rang her
and said i got one of the questions wrong. she said not the one about what color is the white house. i said that when i got, but, no, and i feel a full confessing it to you, but it was what is the american national anthem, and i blurted out "america the beautiful." the immigration officer said, cast and in my view, it should be, but it is not -- "in my view, it should be, but it is not." >> simon winchester sunday night on c-span's "q&a." >> "washington journal" continues. host: the management professor from the wharton school of business. we brought you on due to an op- ed you had in the "wall street journal" -- "what companies are not getting the employees they need." are companies making it difficult to hire these days? guest: the question is whether
employers could do it differently that would make it easier on themselves and allow them to hire more. the complaints that drove the article and the second one i wrote responded to the avalanche of commons on the first one basically dealt with the issue the surveys and loss of story -- there is a story in today's "wall street journal" about employers saying they cannot find people they need to hire. to some extent, these are kind of dog-bites-man stories appeared with 13.9 million unemployed, you wonder how that could be the case. employers are saying that it is a mix of what they're looking for they cannot find in the market. the issue is -- what can we do about that to make it easier to get the people they need? some part of that has to do with the standards they are looking for, what they are looking for, but some part of it has to do with training and developing people, which employers are much less likely to want to do now than, say, a
generation ago. >> you mentioned the "wall street journal" story. part of it talks about a recruiter who find yourself on a hiring hall, anxiously awaiting the arrival of two people she invited to interview from an initial pool of nearly five dozen applicants. guest: a good place to start is to think about what the actual model is. a lot of people have what i call a sort of home depot model of hiring, and that is that employee -- an employer is like a machine and they have requirements which are very precise and they go to the outside labor market and hire those skills. it is like needing it -- a 3/1" screw -- 3/16" screw and plugging it into this job. it is interesting to note that during the tet boom of the 1990's, only 10% of it professionals -- of i.t.
professionals had credentials in the i.t. field. and% of those jobs were done by people who did not have an i.t. background. they learned as they went along -- 90% of those jobs. we know when the economy gets really going and labor markets get tired -- tight and labor markets get scarce, jobs and not require as much experience or as much education. when things get slack, requirements rise a little bit, so this lots of different ways you can get things done during the "wall street journal" story -- i think this is the anecdote. if you drill on that a little bit, you see what she really wants is a recruiter with somebody with a particular set of experience. they are not looking for people coming out of school with a particular degree or only in a few cases is that the story. they're looking for people who had work experience, usually three to five years. in the case, they are looking for diesel mechanics with three to five years' experience or something like that.
the skill problem really seems to come down to work experience. not so much people coming out of school. then we have this question of how you will get work experience if everybody wants to hire somebody who has already got work experience, and that is the heart of the problem, i think. host: is there something in the process that employers have in trying to find these potential candidates, things that could be changed as far as the process is concerned? guest: when i wrote this piece, i got about five -- actually, they are still coming in. it was about a month ago. i got 500 or so replies, and most were from people on the employer side. i learned a lot from those about the quirkiness of the hiring process. basically, this is it -- it works like this in corporations in particular. i am a hiring manager and i need someone to work in this job or here. i filled out a requisition, which is what i want in that position. it is like asking you or me what
we would like in a car, so we start laying out requirements, and we do not necessarily put the bare minimum on. we might as well, since you are asking, put everything we want in those requirements. then it typically goes in a kind of mechanical fashion into a piece of software, which then screens applicants. we are looking at resumes that come in because there are thousands coming in to most any place that has a job now and, frankly, it is difficult to get human eyes to read all those. it takes too much time. they screen them electronically and look for key words, key sets of experience, and if you are missing any of those requirements that the hiring manager put it, your regiment -- your resume is thrown out. some of those requirements also include wages, what your looking for in terms of wages, and if you are looking for more than you are offering, out you go. you can come out of the process
and said there is nobody qualified to do the job because the standards that we have set our in some cases impossibly high and in some cases, it is just because the wage we are offering is below what the market seems to demand. after the process, we say that we do not have anyone who can do the job. when i heard back from employers complaining about this, by the way, the people who thought this was not the case -- it was really the workers -- were all people in upper management levels and the people who thought the system was screw we were the people who were actually doing the system and close to the action. host: our guest with us until 10:00. we are talking about the process of getting a job. we divided the lines differently. you are an employer who wants to weigh in on the hiring process, we have set aside a line for you. if you are seeking work, it is 202-737-0002. if you have stopped looking for work, 202-628-0205.
for all others who want to weigh in on the hiring process, to 02- 628-0184. how do companies, especially large ones, set up these requirements? is it mainly down from an hr perspective? >> one of the problems that happened that has maybe made it difficult is a lot of human resources staff are taken out of these processes. a generation ago, you would have someone working with a hiring manager to draw up the job requirements and there would be a little push back on the hiring manager, so you really need that. do you really need this degree? do you really need this many years of experience? the hr people are gone from the process. it has become mechanical. it is a way of making things more efficient. human resources departments have really been downsized, bigger than most any functional area
inside corporations. a lot of it is very mechanical. it is done with software. it is done with in putting the forms. we see what comes out the pipeline. at the end, nothing comes out and we say, "cannot find anyone to do the job." there is and -- there's not a lot of human judgment in the processes. host: you started off by looking at the education system, saying there's not enough preparation going on. guest: i think that is a common response. this is, for the most part, and an accurate response. there is a view that our education system has collapsed and you could argue that it is not doing as well as it should be doing. but if you look, over time, it appears that the bottom of the u.s. high-school education attainment was in the 1970's, and since then, things have improved at may be a slow rate but more or less steadily.
the dropout rate in the u.s. has fallen by about half. it has fallen even more for african-americans and fallen by half even for hispanics who still have the highest dropout rate at about 70%. the dropout rate has fallen a lot. if you look at these comparisons between the u.s. and other countries -- it is funny, there's not a single measure. they do it for math students in fourth grade, eighth grade, reading students, etc. you can get different measures depending on what you are looking at, but basically, the u.s. court is in the upper quarter of comparison groups in other countries, and some of the other countries are pretty small the do better than we do pure hong kong, for example, which is only part of china. and singapore, which has 3 million people. and there are countries like house extend -- like kazakhstan, which seemed to do well. the idea that the u.s. education
system has collapsed is not true. yet that we are at the bottom of international rankings is not true either. thinking beyond high school, we have an incredible percentage of kids who go on to higher education. probably more than any other country. we have problems on the education site in terms of getting people through higher education, but we are sending a ton of people there. for the most part, they are pursuing functional degrees. the biggest major in college, by far -- more than twice as many students as any other -- is business. it is not that people are going and studying liberal arts. they are trying to get jobs. they are trying to get employers what they want. i do not think we could point our fingers on the education system on this one. host: jim hines of footwear asks -- -- off of twitter asks -- nothing, and sometimes we
see a disconnect between what employers want and what the schools are turning out. maybe the best way to get people work experience, which seems to be the big issue that employers want, is to get closer to the schools. to go on to college campuses and say, "here is what we are looking for, to engage students in a co-op programs and internships so they can get a feel of what the work is like. one of the best things that happened to the u.s. education system in the 1990's was the school to work movement, trying to get employers engaged with schools to do more to spend that boundary. but, i think, frankly, the employers pulled back from it once the labor market began to soften. i think the problem was less the schools reaching out to employers and more now the employer's not reaching out to the schools. host: we have an employer from springfield, illinois. good morning. caller: good morning, gentlemen.
interesting conversation. one topic that i have got quite a bit of experience with, and i would have to disagree with your guests regarding his opinion about schools and universities adequately preparing, especially newer entrants and recent graduates into the job market. what our experience has been from being a small employer is one, getting these applicants to show up on time for their interviews. also, their entire and their etiquette -- their attire and etiquette. we do not use the online application process your guest was talking about. maybe this is something that these students or applicants are expected to have been done possibly prior to them coming in, assuming they have gotten the job. but it has been very
disheartening. the lack of attentiveness to timeliness and the entire -- attire you would expect someone to show up in an interview in a professional environment. i think that these goals may be should be responsible for teaching them the entire process. maybe this should be a family or upbringing thing, too. -- i do not think that the schools should be responsible for teaching them the entire process. you think they should show up and look like you wanted them to have a job. guest: it is interesting. this has been true for employers for quite a while. the number one thing that they complain about in school leavers, as people coming right out of school, is work attitudes and that sort of thing. i may be older than some of your viewers today -- i am a baby boomer. i remember when i was in high school and people were entering
the labor market. our parents' generation said we were the laziest, most unkept regeneration. attire -- we were all disheveled and did not know how to show on time. ungrateful. employers have been saying this about young people forever. by the way, it is not employers. the older generations have been saying this about people leaving school for at least 50 years. perhaps it has been true for 50 years. there is nothing particularly new about these complaints, though. just a reminder, the boomers that came in and we were thought to be the laziest generation ever, we grew up to be the workaholic generation. a lot of these things take care of themselves over time. it was an interesting question, though, about what we should do about work attitudes and to what extent we can blame the schools for that. i think would it be a good idea if schools spend more time helping students think about these things? my sense of schools now is
actually they do spend more time doing this than a generation ago. i can tell you at least from my experience with college students -- and i see sort of the cream of the crop -- but i would say they have got much better and more sophisticated in terms of job-seeking overtime and more presentable. it is also worth pointing out that for the most part, the experience the caller had is pretty unusual in that not many employers are looking to hire straight out of school. everybody wants somebody with three to five years' experience and that is part of the problem. that is one of the reasons the unemployment rate for teenagers looking for full-time jobs is about 25%. host: new jersey, kathy on our line for those seeking work. go ahead. you are on. caller: thank you very much for having me on. i went to a local fair, and i am a nurse. i got my bachelor's degree in nursing when i was 45.
i have neonatal certification. i am unemployed. i have over 30 years-plus of nursing. hospitals only hire for 12-hour shifts, and i have -- being 60, i have a knee problem, and i cannot do 12 hours. i can do eight hours five days a week, but they do not want to hear it. on the web, i had a local hospital said they would not take my resume when it took 25 and put it on line -- when i tried putting it on line, they want one year recent experience in the position that i am applying for. how can you do that when i am on unemployment, laid off in philadelphia because of $300
million shortfalls two years ago, and i worked as a home care nurse, and it is so frustrating. host: thanks for the call. we will let our guests respond. guest: i think that is a common problem. employers, understandably, are picky, and we cannot blame them for that. one of the things that most people do not realize is that hospitals and the health care industry is not so desperate for nurses anymore. a few years ago, they would have made more accommodations for somebody like our caller because they really needed nurses. once they do not need nurses so badly, once the supply catches up to demand, they start to get picky. the problem -- and this is something that is new in this generation -- is that employers are expecting people to come in with the skills that are needed to do the job right now.
a generation ago, most of us who are older can remember people leaving school and going to an employer who would then train them. you could go in with no skills and could be trained to do a job. that is pretty rare these days. we cannot blame employers for not wanting to invest in training if they do not need to. but now, they are looking for someone who not only has the academic training but has experience. in this particular labor market, they are looking for people who have had recent experience. you may have seen a few months ago, there was a story with the equal employment opportunities commission was investigating employers that were refusing to take job applications from people who were unemployed. they only wanted to take applications from people who currently have jobs because they are looking for skills that are absolutely up to date. i think that is the big disconnect now. that employers are not expecting to have to hire people who they
need to train. i do not blame them for that. they need to make money. it is cheaper if you can do that. the question comes whether we think there is a problem in the workforce because employers cannot find the people they want when the people they want are people who currently are working someplace else. host: this is jim on twitter who talks about internships. he says -- guest: that is an interesting question. employers do a lot of internships, and one of the quirky things we are seeing now is the rise of all these unpaid internships. the rise even of vendors to get into the business of brokering. you pay the vendor and the vendor and the broker will then try to find you an internship someplace. someplace often it is free. you are paying to volunteer to get job experience some place.
for the most part, a lot of these internships that do not pay people are probably breaking the wage and hour law, and it basically is that if you are doing work for the employer the benefits the employer economically, you are supposed to be paid for that. if you have an unpaid internship, you are not supposed to be doing the kind of work that employees can do, but, frankly, nobody watches that. nobody particularly wants to report it, so it goes on a lot. it is an interesting question as to whether there are ways around that if we thought it was useful to do. certainly, blurring the school and work boundary is one way to do that. to get students to come in to employers and see how the academic schools are used, go back into the classroom and learn more of those academic skills. it is a good thing to blur that for the most part. that is all perfectly legal. the question is whether it is in the employer short-term interest
to do that. the answer is probably know. is it in the longer term interest? the answer is probably yes, but not everybody is willing to take that long term view. host: next question is from scott who stopped looking for work in new jersey. are there? caller: can you hear me? yes, i am calling in mainly because i just want to support what you are saying this morning. it has been exactly my experience that the requirements of employers seem to have gotten so tight that virtually the only person qualified for the job is the person that just left that job. i have been unemployed for three years. i have sent out hundreds and hundreds of resumes and in the three years i have been unemployed from my engineering job, i have not gotten one response. i do not want to say i did not get one interview. i have not gotten one response. early in 2009, all of my friends
who are also engineers or engineering managers were also laid off. in that entire time, only one of them has since gotten a job and that was with one of his previous employers. it just seems that the bar is so high for getting into a place and the grass apparently to employers looks greener everywhere they look that you cannot get in. host: what type of engineering? caller: manufacturing engineering. host: thank you, sir. guest: i think that raises a really interesting question as to whether the bar is too high. i think to some extent, the bar is often peculiar. for example, i heard from some people e-mailed maine about their own experience in the i.t. world, for example, and the job they were applying for was a job using a particular piece of software. one of the people who wrote in
said they had actually designed software like this, so they had made the software that the job required using, but the software they had made was different -- similar but not identical -- to the one that this particular company had used, and they were rejected for the job because they did not fit precisely the job requirements. this is a person who could have apparently written us off for themselves. was not hired to use the software because they did not fit it exactly. i think the other thing that the caller is hinting at is that there is a fair amount of age discrimination going on in a lot of employer context. some of this is because of, they believe, wage issues. if you see a job application that says they're looking for three to five years' experience. in the legal world, those are called experience-limiting requirements. the question you have to ask yourself is why is it that someone would six years could not do that job? why is it that someone with 10 years could not do the job?
in practice, the issue is often about wages. they think that the folks who are applying what had 10 years' experience will not want to do the jobs because they do not pay enough. i think this experience limiting requirements are almost always a mistake. i do not think you need them. the job pays $50 an hour, let people see it. they want to do it for $15 an hour, that is fine. often, employers are trying to guess at what the applicants might do. they are saying, "this person is overqualified for the job, so they are just going to quit when they get here and things improve." the turnover rates are so high in most jobs now that some of these surveys suggest that 50% of the people currently working say that when the economy picks up, they are going to search for a new job. trying to guess who is going to quit and expecting that people will send -- stay for a very long time is probably a mistake
anyway, so prodigy why even bother with this experience -- so why even bother with these experienced thus limiting requirements that probably shut out workers anyway? >> -- caller: i have an employer for about two years at a social service agency, and i found somebody qualified workers that came in, and at the same time, there were those that were not. the reality is that it is a buyer's market. they can pick and choose. the biggest problem we have in america is global competition. employers have -- they have the advantage. workers are working harder. they are more productive than their counterparts. it is just unfortunate that we have the level of competition we have to the point that we are at a significant disadvantage, but this notion that our education system is debunked and our employers are picking leisure over working hard -- it is just not true.
we must change that perception. there are some changes we need to make in terms of urban education. there's a tremendous gap in urban education as it relates to others. that part must be tackled and it takes a community effort. it takes individual effort. it takes a whole lot, not just government. short of that, we are moving in the right direction. we have to continue to fight discrimination as it relates to age and race and so forth, but american workers are doing fine. but we have to continue to fight those obstacles. professor, i like some of the comments you are making. i think you are dead on. thanks. host: go ahead, sir. guest: the idea that employers are picking now is absolutely right, and that is not surprising and we cannot say there is anything wrong with being picky when you have lots of choices. i think the problem comes when picking this leads to a belief that there is nobody out there that you can hire and a
perception that there's something wrong with the applicants as a result. one of the other things that often goes on when you look at the data on these things -- you see reports like a lot of companies have vacancies that they are not filling. often, that is the case because they, frankly, do not want to fill them. we get permission to hire, but it actually helps my department's budget -- i have profit and loss responsibility if i do not hire. if i can keep the position open and try to get by with the workers i've got, that helps me get by pierre you look at the data and say it is a vacancy that can be filled. it is not that they cannot fill it. it is that they do not want to. there's nothing wrong with it. that is the way business works. i can tell you at my own school, we posted the same job notice every year saying we are looking for candidates in xyz and we did
it for administrative reasons. even when we are not looking for anybody, the notice goes out saying that we are hiring. it does not mean that we cannot fill the job. it just means that in practice, we have decided not to. host: this is from suzanne who says public schools are dropping programs like wood shop and our mechanics and moving them to career centers and community colleges. guest: this probably something to that. at the moment, the public sector and schools associated with the public sector are all being squeezed. if you ask folks who are watching with the biggest education provider is in the united states at the post- secondary level, you are trying to think about the biggest university you know -- the biggest university, regular
university, i think is arizona state, but the biggest post- secondary provider is the university of phoenix, which is a private, for-profit institutions, which is about five times bigger than the next biggest institution. there are a lot of private providers making up the gap. people want skills. they are going back to school to try to get them. 1/4 of the students in community colleges at least a few years ago, are people who already had bachelor's degrees. they are going back to community colleges. the problem is community colleges are overwhelmed with demand and partly under funded. part of it is because a lot of the traditional vocational education programs are being squeezed at the secondary school level, and this creates a problem. if you think you need new skills and where you're going to get them, the private-sector is out
there. private-sector is pretty expensive to go to a for-profits school and try to get skills there. again, we come back to the problem of if you are a job seeker, what do you do? you are trying to figure out what employers want. i can tell you that i have two kids in college -- actually, i have one that is graduated. unemployed. back to a community college. got a health care certificate and still cannot find a job. the employers all want someone who has job experience in the field that everybody thought was hot in health care. the problem, if you are a job seeker -- i think they are for the most are knocking themselves out trying to figure out what to do to get jobs. students in school are trying to figure themselves out -- trying to figure out what employers want. i do not want to see us blame the students for this, and it is also difficult to blame the schools for what is going on. host: this morning, joe --
diane, go ahead. caller: i had a few problems. i do blame employers for not training. i do think they should be criticized for that. i also think we should change priorities so schools are not eliminating. these questions that are important for a lot of different cognitive and emotional developments -- would shop, the auto repair -- that enable self- sufficiency -- it is a paradigm that is important. one of the jobs i did have, a temporary job, was editing standardized tests, and i came through school when we did not have standardized tests. we had wonderful critical and analytical thinking in school that everybody was able to participate and encouraged to take. those standardized tests are
diverting hundreds of millions of dollars from the courses that to translate to cognitive and voc-ed level skills. guest: back to the first point about training, i think the issue is a fundamental one. many of the complaints about job skills are with respect to what we used to call a skilled trades. these are plumbers, electricians, machinists. those are jobs that historically people would train four through apprenticeship programs. the apprenticeship programs have largely died. there are so few of them. the bureau of labor statistics does not even track them anymore. it is hard to know how many there even are. they died in part because many of them were union-based and as the union's decline, the programs declined as well and employers did not pick them up. the thing about apprenticeship programs is the work really well. it is an efficient way to train people because they are learning as the work and as they contribute. but part of the problem is these
programs are gone. you cannot do these programs without employer help. employers have to be involved in them. otherwise, there is no apprenticeship program. the complaints about skilled trades -- very big issue, but i think the idea about assuming that vocational education schools should not take this on is something we'd better think about. historically, they have not taken it on. historically, they have an apprenticeship programs and it is very difficult and said lynn not the best way to do it to try to assume that students are going to learn how to be an electrician or plumber without an apprentice-like experience. host: this is joy in villanova, who said --
guest: i think that is a great point. it goes back to the idea that the typical company -- it is not like a home depot model where it is a machine and they know they can look and see certain workers with exactly these skills and plug them in here. employers can adjust the work to the worker. that happens all the time in various kinds of ways. most people who are pretty literate and smart can learn how to do things pretty quickly with little but a trial and error. the question is -- how do we pay for that? in fairness to the employers out there who have a very difficult job trying to make money in any kind of environment -- they do not want to invest in people and then have the people leave and then go someplace else. certainly, that is happening now. the reason it is happening, by the way, is because their competitors across the street who are not training are willing to wait until they finish training and then hire the
people away. how do we solve this big problem for employers about how to make investments in skills and training and not see them just walk out the door? the best way to do this is to get the employees to coexist. again, this is what apprentice- like programs did. when you are an apprentice, the lowest level in an electrical field or masonry or something like that, you are doing sort of the heavy lifting and being paid something, but you are probably contributing more value than you are actually being paid. by the way, the same thing is historically true in law firms. if you are a necessity in a law firm, the firm is making money because the value of what you're doing is more than what they are paying you, so they can afford to train you in an apprentice- like model along the way. that is not a bad model, and for the most part, i do not see employers making use of that anymore. as soon as formal apprenticeship
went out the door, they stopped that approach. i think some of this is we have got to be a little more creative. i think in fairness to employers, they have to figure out a way to do this way they do not lose their shirts, and that is the way to do it. host: another e-mail that lists problems with recruiting. guest: i think another thing that is important to remember is that these are labor markets we're talking about. the way markets work is if you raise the price, supply increases. you cannot have a real shortage in a market as long as you can get more of what you want if the price went up. for example, if we talk about diamonds, no one says there is a shortage of dimes, even though they are quite expensive.
as long as you're willing to pay the market price, you can get all you want. when employers say they cannot find workers to do the jobs that they need done, i always ask, "have you tried raising your wages?" usually, the responses they do not feel they can do that. that is the case, i understand that, but that is not a shortage. it just means they cannot afford the price of the labor they are trying to get. it is important to remember that. these are markets, and freezing wages may be necessary in order to get the people you need -- raising wages may be necessary in order to get the people you need. by the way, that is not a bad thing. the things we should be interested in is how to get living standards appear in living standards do not rise unless wages rise. what drives wages higher is when labor markets are reasonably tight. what drives productivity is when employers respond to higher wages by investing capital to substitute for labor.
a tight labor market, wages that are rising is a pretty good thing. it drives standards of living higher cure it creates incentives for employers to invest. it is not a bad thing for the economy, although i understand why employers do not want to do it. host: we have another minute. if you could just answer one more tweet. true. that is certainly frankly, most employers in their hearts do not expect long-term loyalty anymore. i think -- you know, they are not willing to give it and they think the reason is for the most part, they cannot. business is just too uncertain for them. for the most part, they do not expect it. the problem that leads to is this very short-term orientation, which does not even make sense for them, and that is the idea that we have to find today exactly the person who can do the job tomorrow because we
cannot afford any ramp up time or afford any training. there are ways to make training pay. there are ways to make it pay appeared which is have to be more creative about how we do it. guest: we linked the professor posey of the rigid the professors of the -- we linked the professors of that to our page. thank you for your time this morning. that is it for our program today. another edition of "washington journal" comes your way tomorrow at 7:00 a.m. had a good day. . .
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